Ban for paralegal who lied on CV to get job at law firm

Job application: Paralegal misled law firm

A paralegal who lied on his CV about his experience, signed a statutory declaration and held himself out as a solicitor has been banned from working in the profession.

Jacob Niall Joshua McSherry must seek the permission of the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) should he wish to rejoin a law firm.

An SRA notice yesterday said that Mr McSherry got a job at Manchester firm Slater Heelis after submitting through an agency a CV which claimed that he had had five years’ experience working at a firm called Russell & Russell.

He also supplied a reference purportedly from Russell & Russell but in fact he had never worked there and the reference was fake. He also provided a further fake reference to another potential employer.

Separately, Mr McSherry witnessed and signed a statutory declaration in which he held himself out to be a commissioner for oaths, officer of the court or justice of the peace, when he was none of those things and had not been authorised to make the declaration by anyone at Slater Heelis.

In another incident, Mr McSherry sent a letter by email on a private business matter in which he described himself as a solicitor.

The SRA said he then lied to both Slater Heelis – where he worked from December 2020 to May 2021 – and also the SRA by saying the letter and statutory declaration were part of his course work for the legal practice course.

It made an order under section 43 of the Solicitors Act 1974, saying that Mr McSherry’s “serious” misconduct made it “undesirable for him to be involved in a legal practice without the SRA’s prior approval”.

    Readers Comments

  • Frank Allen says:

    Many candidates will exaggerate and twist their experience in order to meet the selection criteria. Selectors must always confirm experience before making job offers. This problem is commonplace across all industries.

    The STAR(L) selection method greatly reduces this problem

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